Chapter 8 – Brotherly love
Tissue warning – LOW – possibly some medium
Frying Pan?? Start swinging
The next morning, Bobby arrived at court in Shreveport to meet with the Bon Temps historical society. They had their own local lawyer, Sid Matt Lancaster, to represent their interests so Cataliades was not needed. Together they were going to request an injunction to stop Furnan Developers from knocking down the farmhouse. They were only in their meeting for 15 minutes when Sid Matt received a call from the Bon Temps Sheriff, Bud Dearborn. After he hung up, he announced. “Ladies, Mr. Burnham, I regret to inform you that our time here is a moot point. Furnan had the house knocked down at 5AM this morning. He was ready with the equipment onsite yesterday while he was applying for permission.”
Olga Heddy, a member of the historical society, shook her head. “Who’s going to tell Sookie? That poor girl.”
Sid Matt offered. “I’ll stop by and tell Maxine today. It’ll be best coming from her.”
They all agreed and left Shreveport.
Hunter didn’t have dialysis, so he and Sookie planned to rest after his breakfast; then go to the playroom after lunch. Marjorie was feeling better and Hunter wanted to spend time with her since she had chemo again the next day. While Hunter and Sookie were watching a movie after his breakfast, a delivery arrived from the local Verizon store via Bobby. Sookie tried to read Bobby again, but her boobs were apparently too much of a distraction and besides, Bobby was out of the room quickly. She was a bit unhappy at this delivery because she suspected the box was a phone since her lack of cell phone was mentioned last night. She turned to Hunter who had heard her reservations. “I’ll need to keep my mouth shut or he’ll just keep sending us stuff.”
“He wants to Mommy.” Hunter was quiet then exclaimed after hearing her thoughts. “He’s not doing that Mommy! He’s not trying to buy your affections.”
“Hunter Stackhouse, you stay out of my head.” She whisper-yelled back at him.
“Don’t you believe me?”
“I do, but what will others think?”
“Don’t you tell me not to focus on what others think?”
She narrowed her eyes to him. “Too smart for your own good.”
He nodded to the box. “You opening that? It probably needs to charge.”
After calling him a nudge (causing a giggle), she did open the box to find an iPhone, accessories and a note. It was handwritten again and since he left here AFTER the Verizon store was closed, she couldn’t figure that part out. Her curiosity would need to wait until she could ask Eric, after she yelled about the phone of course.
A cell phone is a necessity for you, so this is NOT a gift that you can refuse. The voice and data plan has been pre-paid through next year so you have no worries about that. I preloaded it with my phone number (as the first on your list of course), Mustapha Kahn my PI and Bobby Burnham, my dayman. If you run into trouble during the day, you can call either of these men for help. They’ve both been alerted that you have their numbers. Since you’re in the know, I’ll tell you that Mustapha is a Were.
I also added a collection of music and an app that contains the guitar chords for hundreds of songs. You may find some other surprises as you play with the phone as well.
I’m not taking it back so you can just plan to yell at me tonight when I come for my visit.
PS: To set things up, I had to create your passcodes: Your code for the phone is 1028 and your iTunes passcode is: minangel1. You’ll need that to download apps and make iTunes purchases.
Sookie read the note twice then thought to herself, ‘He is so sweet, but I’m still yelling at him tonight. What will everyone think?’
She faked a scowl and told him, “Stay out mister.” For good measure, she waggled a finger at him too.
The day went quickly with Grady, Johnny and Hunter re-telling Eric’s stories to Marjorie then a few games of Buckaroo. They loved when the pieces went flying and the adults in the room needed to scramble and collect them all. When the nurses came in and announced dinner requiring that the kids return to their rooms, they were met with pouty faces and begging. They’d been having so much fun they wanted to eat together. Normally, the nurses followed policy and returned the kids to their rooms, but they couldn’t deny the request. Both Jackie and Nancy were working and they knew the prognosis for Marjorie was not good; she’d been given less than a month to live and a hospice group was being brought in later this week to discuss options with the family. Sharing a knowing look, they started setting up the room for dinner and the trays were brought in. Hunter and Sookie were curious about the nurses’ actions so they had a listen to their thoughts and Hunter struggled with the information, but they tried to act ‘normal’. Hunter was eating a meal Sookie had prepared at Gramma Fortenberry’s so she was replacing the hospital dinner with her own.
When Eric arrived on the floor, he could see Hunter’s room was empty and he followed the voices to the playroom where dinner was well under way. He smiled from the doorway, a Caramel Java Chiller in one hand and a box of freshly dipped chocolate strawberries in the other.
Her plan to yell at him went out the window when she saw his face. None of the adults in the room missed the look they gave each other; it appeared that for Sookie and Eric, the rest of the room no longer existed. He handed Sookie her treats, kissed her on the cheek and moved a chair to sit on Hunter’s other side. He wanted to pull her into his lap but he was also here for Hunter so he refrained, for now. “What’s for dinner tonight Hunter?”
“Mommy’s shepherd pie. She cooked it yesterday at Gramma Fortenberry’s.”
“You are lucky your Mommy can cook. Hmm . . . I guess anyone can cook, it’s that you like it that makes you lucky.”
“My Mommy is the best!”
“Of course she is.” He agreed with the boy and they smiled at each other. Sookie melted at the bond they already seemed to be forming.
“Did your Mommy cook?
“She did, when I was human the duties between men and women were very much defined regarding meals: the women cooked and men hunted and slaughtered the animals. If I was gone a Viking for a while, I would cook meat over a fire, but that was it for me. My mother could put a meal on the table and we ate it but she was not very creative with how she prepared the food. It was boiled meat with vegetables and bland. My wife, when she was alive, was much better at preparing something with actual taste.”
Having realized that Eric was a vampire given his appearance and the way he spoke about another era, Marjorie’s mother spoke up. “Fascinating. Are vampires being approached by historians and archeologists for interviews? The real life experience?”
“I’ve been disappointed in the lack of interest. I contacted LSU for example, as did others in this area and they never responded.”
“I teach High School history; I want to spend time with you, well I’m on leave now – but when I’m back.” The adults in the room chuckled at her enthusiasm.
“I’m sorry, we didn’t meet last night; I’m Eric Northman.” He put out his hand.
“Sandra Kilpatrick and this is my husband Tom. We’re Marjorie’s parents.”
“Well, I’m sure Hunter is happy to see Marjorie tonight, he missed her yesterday. If you’re serious about learning history from those who lived it, let me know. ” He pulled out his wallet. “Here’s my card.”
Sookie swooned at his ease with the other parents. Alcide never took the time to meet any of the other families while they were together. Granted, they were both dealing with sick family members, but while she’d met all of his family and his mother’s medical team; he never made a similar effort. While she and Eric joked about his wooing last night with his romantic gestures, this was the true wooing – infusing himself into her life. It also scared her. They met THREE days ago and she was feeling drawn to him and she knew Hunter already idolized him. She had responsibilities and couldn’t afford to be swept into a romance that consumed her or one that could hurt her son. At the moment though, her baby had just finished his supper and it was truly time to get the kids back to the room. Grady and Hunter were barely able to keep their eyes open from the extended time in the playroom.
Tonight, Hunter wanted to try walking to the bathroom once they had him wheeled into the room. “I thought Hunter was bedridden? I also thought his kidneys didn’t work?”
“His energy level is the problem. We still try to get him up once or twice a day. It’s good for him to move around since staying in one spot all day can be bad for the skin. And you’re right, his kidneys’ don’t work but he has . . . other needs.”
“Got it. So does he need help?” Eric asked as Sookie went to the corner for something. His face fell as he saw she was pulling out something with handles and wheels. He hadn’t expected the boy to need a device. “What’s that?”
“It’s a walker. He needs this to keep steady since I need to wheel his stuff behind him – he’s hooked up all the time.”
“So I’ll steady him while you push instead.”
“Ok, that’ll work.” They got him out of the wheelchair and Eric was happy to see him able to stand and walk, even if he was a bit wobbly. They had him back in bed quickly and now Eric understood why he only got out of bed occasionally; he was exhausted. Hunter wanted to stay awake to visit but Eric saved him from that decision. “I need to go. Remember, I have to be at Fangtasia early tonight. I’m already running late.”
He laughed since Hunter’s face was so hopeful looking. “I’ll be here tomorrow since I can’t come by at all on the rest of this week. On Thursday I have prep work to do for my trip out of town and Friday and Saturday are the busiest nights at the bar. I’ve already left the rest of the staff a few times on those nights recently. I think my own child will stake me if I miss this weekend.”
Sookie gasped. “Well, we can’t have that. We’re just getting to know you.”
“I’m exaggerating . . . a bit.”
“I can’t believe you’re leaving already, I didn’t get to yell about the phone.”
“Can you walk with me to the lobby? Maybe we can get an empty elevator. You can yell at me then.” He was hoping she’d say yes so they could have just a few more minutes together.
Hunter could clearly hear that Mommy would like a moment with Eric before he left so he encouraged her. “Go on Mommy. It’s only a few minutes. I’ll probably be asleep by the time you get back.” Using her thoughts she reminded him to stay out of her head, but she nodded at his encouragement.
Once in the hall, they clasped hands and headed towards the elevator. “Sookie, please don’t use the few minutes we have tonight to discuss the phone. We both know you need it. I really want you to enjoy the security it can provide and the fun with the apps and music. Please?”
“Since you’re spending more time with us tomorrow I’ll yell at you then. For now, I’ll just thank you.”
They stepped into the elevator and it was empty – at least for a moment. “Do I get a kiss as thanks?”
“You never miss an opportunity.”
He waggled his eyebrows as the doors closed. “Hurry, we only have three floors.”
She was laughing at his boyish expression and behavior when she moved into his embrace. The same electric current from the night before tingled on both their lips as they gave each other a quick kiss. Eric pulled away and put his forehead to hers. “Gods, I can’t believe I won’t see you again until tomorrow evening.”
“Employees need to be paid Eric.”
“I know. I’ll think of you while toiling away.” They got off the elevator and she was still walking with him. “Why is Hunter hooked up to so much, what’s the point?”
“They track stuff like his oxygen saturation level and how his heart is working in general. The heart is the big problem since I can give him a kidney – we’re a tissue match. Anyway – that’s why they monitor his heart so much.”
“And the donor situation? It’s just a waiting game?”
“He’s low on the list. They haven’t determined what caused the kidney failure – they know something blocked the proper blood flow, but not what. They won’t risk a donor kidney without knowing the cause.”
“Are they still trying to find the cause?”
“On the Parish’s dime? Not really. I mean, they run tests and the doctors here have consulted on him, but nothing aggressive has been done.” They were at the door now so Sookie changed the subject to say goodnight. “Well, we’re at the door and you have to work.”
“I know.” He nodded towards her pocket, where the phone was. “You can send me texts from that phone. Maybe we can chat later after I get the numbers done and before you head to bed.”
“I’d like that. Call me if it’s before 10:30.”
Eric left her knowing her day tomorrow was going to be hard. He’d actually called Maxine when he rose to discuss that the farmhouse had already been destroyed. They spoke about how to tell Sookie and decided that Maxine would be the best person to tell her while she was away from the hospital. Hunter hated to see Sookie upset, and this information was likely going to cause a significant reaction. Maxine had told Eric that Sookie counted on Furnan’s plans to keep the structure so her historic family home would be preserved, even if she was not living in it.
Luckily he was able to spend the entire evening tomorrow and he’d arranged for Maxine to stay with Hunter in case Sookie needed space. The woman had even suggested it to him when they spoke. She really was an ally to him and a good friend and surrogate mother to Sookie. He’d ask Bobby for some gift suggestions as a thank you.
On the drive to Fangtasia he took the opportunity to call Genny Burke from Make a Wish. “Genny, it’s Eric Northman.”
“Eric. How are things in Shreveport?”
“Wonderful? Well do tell.”
“I’ve met with them three nights this week. We don’t have our official date planned yet mostly since I have to travel next week but I wanted to keep you informed.”
She could hear happiness in his voice and smiled in reply from her house. “I appreciate that. Call me with an update, please?”
“Of course.” He was quiet just for a second. “Genny. Thank you for making the effort to get me that letter.”
“You’re welcome Eric. Have a good night. I look forward to an update.”
“You enjoy your evening too.” The smile remained on his face until he walked into his office and was accosted by Pam.
“Where have you been? You hardly show up for work these days. You arrived last night only just in time for the scheduled meetings. I can tell you’ve been to a hospital again and tonight you smell like chocolate too.”
He seethed, he was already angry that he had to come in to do the payroll that was Pam’s responsibility. Since she hadn’t done it for the past 3 months, he had no faith that she would pick it up tonight to get it done. Now, with her reaction, he decided to push. Through clenched teeth, he responded. “Who do you think you are, asking me where I’ve been?”
“I’m a partner in this business.”
He moved to loom over her. “Then act like it. Do the fucking payroll Pam!”
She backed away, truly afraid of her maker, something that had happened only two times before in her undead life, and both when she was still very young. He’d never actually hit her but the fear was real. On top of that, Eric rarely cursed out loud so she knew he was upset. “Calm down Eric. I’m worried for us. Can’t you see that?”
“No I cannot. I see a girl I have spoiled for far too long. I have let you get away with shirking your responsibilities. I have supported you financially when I should have turned you out to make your own way. Even when you went to Minnesota to ‘spread your wings’ I funded everything you did. I would be happy to keep doing so if you would only step up and handle your responsibilities. You have become a disappointment to me Pam.”
That hurt! In shock, she backed away even further from her maker unsure of what to do next. Long moments passed before either of them said anything. Finally, he turned away, “Leave my office. I have work; I mean YOUR work to do.” From the corner of his eye, he could see her skulking out.
As he planned, he grabbed the timecards and started work on the paysheets he needed to create. It really was ridiculous that he had to sit here and do this work. Unfortunately, it needed to be done; Ginger never got it right and Pam no longer took her work seriously. He was keeping that one month promise to himself, to see if she’d step up to the plate but the probability looked low. The task was complete well before the 9PM deadline (that’s when his other company, Viking Industries, pulled the paysheet data to include it in their own payruns. This way he didn’t need a separate pay system for Fangtasia). He headed out to sit on his throne for a while, but couldn’t keep his mind off Sookie. He sent her a text to see what she was doing.
E: You there?
Several moments went by before he got:
S: HI! I couldn’t get my phone code in quickly enough
E: You’ll get used to it. I’m bored
S: Poor baby, bored at a bar. I would be bored except I’ve been busy setting up playlists
S: What’s minangel and 1028 anyway?
E: It’s really min ängel or my angel in Swedish because that’s what you are. 1028 is the date Genny gave me Hunter’s letter
That answer stopped her breath for a moment before she responded.
S: There’s that wooer again
He chuckled on his throne then caught himself and scowled at the crowd
E: Did you try the guitar chords app?
S: No. Hunter was asleep when I got back and I really have been building playlists. You loaded a ton of music on this.
E: I wanted you to have options.
S: Well thank you
Eric noticed Pam headed his way and he didn’t want her to see what he was up to.
E: I have to run, I’ll call you later?
Pam had been watching Eric up on stage. He was changing and she was honestly worried. He was neglecting his duties at the bar; his presence was required for business. Sure, he was keeping up with his sheriff duties and the back business for the bar but he needed to be on display; he needed to pay attention to fangbangers. Over the past few months, he’d been taking less and less interest in the women that were throwing themselves at him. Easy fucks for God’s sake. What was his problem? Now he was even worse. The past few days? He was up to something and he was keeping it a secret. His focus had strayed and she needed it to end, NOW. Whatever or she suspected WHOever was distracting him was also feeding him these ideas about her being a spoiled disappointment. She needed to find out what was going on and fast. After a few minutes a thought occurred to her: Bobby! Bobby would hopefully know what he was up to. She just needed to question him – even use glamour if necessary. For now she would play nice; act like the perfect child – well not all the paperwork shit he wanted done, but in other ways. As she headed across the bar she saw him laugh while he was looking at his phone. Her master – LAUGHED – in public! Perhaps he was getting some kind of vampire insanity. He looked up and saw her approaching and it didn’t escape her that he finished some text conversation and quickly put his phone in his pocket before she got there.
“Yes Pam?” She moved to squat next to his chair so she could look in his face. Since she and Eric shared a child maker bond where they could feel each other’s emotions, she focused on her worry about him hoping that he would believe it was worry about their relationship that he was feeling.
“I want to talk about your disappointment in me. Can we do that?”
This made Eric hopeful. Maybe his words, were finally getting through; then again, maybe this was all acting. He could feel worry coming from her but nothing else – that wasn’t too helpful. Deciding to give her the benefit of the doubt, he agreed. “We’ll talk after closing on Friday. I’ll be out tomorrow night and I’m a little too upset at you to talk tonight.” She nodded and rose, but before she walked away he asked, “Who did you leave at the door?”
Thankfully she’d thought that one through and had Thalia, an ancient vampire in Eric’s retinue, take over for her to check ID’s. The fangbangers loved Thalia. She was horrible and mean and the more she scowled and showed her fangs, the more they loved it. “Thalia.”
“A good start Pamela. Since I won’t be here at all tomorrow, why don’t you take the rest of the night off?”
“Thank you Eric.” This was good timing, she’d go see Bobby tonight.
Eric stayed on the throne for another hour before he’d had enough. His office and working on Viking Industries was a welcome respite from the sycophants scrambling for a bit of his attention. He called Sookie at about 10:00 but he could hear that she was exhausted so they only spoke for a few minutes. One thing he did discuss with her was the fact that they hadn’t planned their actual ‘Make a Wish’ date. She agreed to work out an evening with Hoyt and Jessica to stay with Hunter and they would select what to do when they saw each other the next night. He did mention the upcoming vampire summit in New York for the following week so they agreed to wait until a few days after he was back from the summit since he would need to spend time at the bar the weekend he returned.
By the time he’d gotten home, he was calmer over the situation with Pam. He went to bed hoping her desire to talk was genuine.
In her own home, Pam went to bed with a name and a location: Sookie Stackhouse Room 345 at the Parish hospital. As soon as she had a night off while Eric was at the bar, Sookie would be getting a visit. Whoever she was, she was ruining her life.
Bobby woke the next morning to pounding at his door. He staggered into the living room and opened the door a crack to see who was knocking. There were two uniformed police officers. “Officer Kevin Pryor and this is my partner Officer Kenya Jones. We’re here from the Bon Temps Sheriff’s office. I have Officer Kadyke from Shreveport as you live in his jurisdiction. We need to speak with you Mr. Burnham.”
“You can contact my lawyer. I’ll get you his card.”
“Sir, we have a summons for you to appear in court this morning. We’re here to escort you.”
“May I see this summons?” One of the officers handed it through the door. A quick glance told him it was related to Stackhouse; a hearing was called by his attorney saying that Bobby’s claims and injuries were lies. She was moving for a dismissal of all charges. This was not good. Bobby was healed and if the right folks were not present in court, specifically the officer who documented his injuries, Jason could get off. He’d go right for Sookie then, Bobby was sure. He needed to stall and make some calls. “I’m not dressed. Give me a few minutes.”
“We’ll need to wait in the house for you sir.”
Bobby quickly dressed while trying to reach Eric’s lawyer, Desmond Cataliades. He was in New Orleans at the moment but would call an associate to meet Bobby at the courthouse. The associate, Donald Narvon, was versed in vampire issues and Desmond said he would explain the healing and other relevant background to his alternate when he called him. In short, Bobby was to follow his guidance. Next he left a message for Eric regarding the potential threat to Sookie, but of course he was dead for the day. He was about to call a Were to stay at the hospital but a knock on his bedroom door telling him they needed to leave NOW stopped him. Per the officers at his door, if he didn’t make court on time, he would be held in contempt.
A short drive later, they were at the Bon Temps ‘court house’ which was actually a rented office space in town. The small room frequently sat unused actually, and a judge that traveled through several of the small towns in the area was brought in for the day. He did not look happy. Bobby saw Jason and his lawyer look his way and they exchanged a knowing glance. There was only one man in the ‘audience’ area and he signaled to Bobby to sit; he gathered this was Donald. As they were a moment late, court was already in session but the officers explained that they had woken Bobby and the judge seemed to accept the excuse, he then instructed Portia to make her opening statement.
“Your Honor, thank you for allowing this expedited hearing. As you can see, Robert Burnham, the alleged victim, is here in court with no obvious injuries. While we have documentation from the Shreveport police officer of injuries, she could not be found this morning to participate and confirm these pictures are valid. The Bon Temps police took a witness statement from a nurse at the hospital who saw Bobby make his statements then again a day later when she was shocked to see he was without injury. I would suggest that seeing is believing your honor and I move for an immediate dismissal of all charges.”
“While I’m inclined to agree with you, I do need to hear from the DA’s office and Mr. Burnham himself first.” He nodded to the Prosecutor. “Mr. Sheevy, please proceed.”
“Your honor, I request a 15 minute recess as I have not had a chance to understand why Mr. Burnham’s appearance now and the pictures from after the incident don’t match.”
The Assistant DA didn’t think he would get the time so he moved forward with his plan B. “Then in lieu of an opening statement, I call Bobby Burnham to the stand.”
Donald, the attorney for Bobby had been writing notes as quickly as possible to provide some instruction. It didn’t appear that things were going to work out. Jason would likely be set free so now the best they could hope for was to keep Bobby from being charged with making false accusations against Jason. No doubt they would resolve the issues once the Shreveport PD got involved, but this Judge could throw Bobby in jail today and from what he knew of Eric Northman, he would not be pleased.
Once the necessary swearing to tell the truth and confirming his identity was done, the prosecutor started with questions.
“Mr. Burnham, can you explain how you appear healed?”
“Yes. I work for a vampire and he arranged for vampire blood to be used. If the court is not aware, vampire blood can heal.” Per the note from Donald, he’d been given permission to state this information. It was starting to become publicly known anyway.
The judge sneered and asked his own question. “So you are a V-addict?”
“I beg your pardon?”
“A V addict, you’re addicted to vampire blood?” The judge was disgusted; he hated vampires, the whole lot of them. He’d been informed about this man’s association with the liaison vampire in the area and wanted to make him pay for that.
“No your Honor. The blood used for the healing was fresh, that’s not what V is. Vampire blood becomes the addictive drug V once it’s been out of the vampire’s body for at least a week. The time changes the properties of the blood.”
“You seem to have a great deal of knowledge on this topic.”
“I work for Eric Northman, the designated human/vampire liaison for the area. It’s my job to know this type of information.”
“To me, it appears that you have some vendetta against Mr. Stackhouse and made up injuries so you could charge him.”
“I assure you, that’s not the case. I was beaten by the accused. Detective Farner can confirm my injuries.”
“Yes, but she’s not here, is she?” The judge was pleased with this turn of events. When Portia Bellefleur contacted him with this ‘opportunity’ he moved quickly so he could turn things around on this vampire situation. It was a small victory for humans, but he wanted to get his digs in. He couldn’t wait to find out how Eric Northman reacted to the news that his employee was locked up when he rose. “I’m moving forward with the evidence I have. You, Robert Burnham, have no injuries that I can see. Given the documentation from the incident, you should still have bruises and other evidence. I’m dismissing the charges against Jason Stackhouse and instead putting Robert Burnham in the Bon Temps jail for falsely accusing Jason Stackhouse.”
Bobby wanted a moment with the attorney so he could at least get someone to guard Sookie, but he was taken out in cuffs and driven to the small Bon Temps jail before he had a chance to know what was happening. His request to meet with his attorney was denied pending the arrival of the Bon Temps Sheriff, Bud Dearborn. When Bobby asked when the Sheriff would be in, he was informed he was out around town with no plans to arrive soon.
After being dropped at his house by Portia, Jason’s first act was to plan his revenge on Sookie. His need to take his pent up aggression out on his sister had grown with every hour he was in jail. Unless her schedule changed, she would be at Hoyt’s house cooking with Maxine today. Maxine wasn’t a threat; hell, she’d likely be asleep when he got there. His idiot sister hadn’t pressed charges before; she didn’t want the police involved while she was trying to adopt the brat that had helped her ruin his life. His plan in place, he drove to Maxine’s street and parked out of sight.
A few hours later, he saw Sookie’s car pull in. He spent a moment thinking it was actually HIS car – his Gran forced him to give it to her after he bought his truck and maybe he should take it back. That’d cripple her even further. Yeah, that’s what he’d tell her today. Choosing the element of surprise, he walked up to the house and listened in. He was shocked at what he heard.
“So where did he take you last night?”
“MAXINE! You won’t believe it. He took me to a storage facility.”
“Doesn’t he know how to date?”
She laughed at Maxine – mostly because she thought the same thing. “I’ll explain but I kinda told him his wooing needed work.” The women both chuckled. “The warehouse was filled with everything from my house.” She was misty thinking about it all over again. “He bought everything. He was behind those bidders that made a clean sweep. Well except for the quilt the nurses bought me.”
“LORDY! He is a keeper Sookie. He saved everything?” Sookie nodded. “Whatcha gonna do with it then?”
“I don’t know. He’s got it stored and he said it can stay like that until I decide.”
Maxine was very pleased. This would help Sookie get over the news about the farmhouse. Something she dreaded telling her, but she knew when Eric called her – she was the best person to do it so Sookie could react without worrying about Hunter. “That’s just great Sookie. Come sit with me, I have something to discuss with you.”
“You have me worried.” They were seated on the couch now, unaware that Jason was right outside.
“It’s bad news little girl, and I’m sorry.”
“Just give it to me.”
“The plans Furnan Developers had for the farmhouse changed. He was granted permission to demolish it. Sid Matt went to Shreveport where the judge who made the ruling holds court but they were too late. Sookie, the house is gone. I’m so sorry.” She put her arms out and Sookie fell into them immediately, sobbing.
“He p . . . promised me he wouldn’t d . . . do that.”
“Yes, I remember.”
“My Gran is probably furious at me.”
“No hon, she isn’t. You did what you needed to do. Furnan is the snake here.” She helped Sookie wipe her face; then told her. “Eric called me yesterday afternoon. He knows, but we decided to let me tell you so Hunter wouldn’t be impacted by your reaction. Though with your mind readin’, you can’t keep it a secret. I just didn’t want to get into that with him.”
“Thanks Maxine. I’ll tell him soon, but yeah, better it comes from me. I agree, even though Hunter will read it from me, ‘cause the little turd listens when he’s not supposed to, it’s better he doesn’t see how upset I was. Good decision Maxine.”
“Glad you approved. He was torn with not telling you last night.” She pushed Sookie a bit. “Go on and cook and stuff. I’ve been fretting so much over the news I didn’t sleep so I’m going to my room if you don’t mind.”
“Not at all. I wish you hadn’t lost sleep, but it’s nice to have someone worry over me.”
“My pleasure my dear, and I’m not the only one.” She winked at Sookie, causing a small giggle to escape her otherwise burdened expression.
Jason was pissed. Now Sookie had lost their house – in a forever way! He was going to wait til the old bat was asleep then he’d surprise his sister. He gave Maxine 30 minutes before he barged into the living room and spoke to Sookie while she was sorting laundry. “I cain’t believe you lost the house you cunt!”
“JASON! What are you doing here?” She whisper yelled so she wouldn’t wake Maxine.
“My dear sister,” he spoke with a sneer, “I left jail this morning to see you. Now I find that not only have you managed to lose everything in the family home – you lost us the actual home forever too!”
This surprised Sookie. “Jail?”
“Yes Sookie, some guy accused me of beating him.” She delved into his mind right away.
“Bobby, you beat Bobby?”
“You know him?”
“He works for my friend.”
“This Eric I heard ya talking about with Maxine? So he bought all ma stuff?”
She did not acknowledge his comments and instead tried to get him to leave. “Jason, you’re scaring me, you should just leave before I call the police.”
“You won’t do that Sookie. You can’t have an unstable brother while you’re trying to adopt your brat.”
He was right and that scared her, but she also knew Eric wouldn’t tolerate his behavior and she was afraid what he would do to Jason, she hated her brother right now, but didn’t want him dead. While she wanted to threaten Jason with Eric – informing him that Eric was a vampire – there was also no way to predict his reaction to that news and he was close to violence as it was. She was already afraid for her and Maxine. “Jason, Eric won’t take kindly if you hurt either of us.”
“I’m not afraid of him. His lackey was a pussy – practically cried when I barely tapped him. I won’t touch your precious Maxine either. She’d report me. You’re my focus here.”
‘You have no idea what you’re doing Jason’, she thought, but she told him. “If you leave now, we’ll just forget you were here today Jason.”
“Oh, you ain’t ever going to forget this visit. You’ve also given me enough of a clue that nothing I do will show. Nobody will ever know, will they Sookie?” Her fear grew as he approached her. The last words he spoke were, “Keep your mouth shut bitch,” as he started punching her torso. Sookie was done rolling over for Jason. She screamed for Maxine to call 911 and started defending herself and trying to kick him herself. He was much stronger and was able to hurt her anyway – but she couldn’t let him go on without at least trying to fight back.
After landing only a few good blows, Hoyt stormed into the room. “Get off of her Jason!”
“This is a family matter Hoyt, get out.”
“I brought Bud with me Jason. Momma called, she heard everything from the moment you walked into the room.”
He glared at his sister. “You ain’t gonna press charges though.”
Bud suggested that she press charges for her continued safety. He also made another really good point: If the Parish adoption agent learned of the attacks and that she didn’t press charges that could also go badly for her.
On the floor from her brother’s beating, she considered Bud’s comments. While she was afraid what would happen to her adoption attempts if she did press charges, she was more afraid of Jason now that he was becoming more violent. “I am. Bud, I’m pressing charges.”
“Ok Sookie, ‘bout time. Let’s get you to the doctor; then you can file the paperwork. Jason, I’m calling Kevin to pick you up.”
Bud called in for help and Kevin arrived to take care of Jason. Sookie refused medical attention, “It’s only a few bruises.” She was more worried about hiding it from Eric. He was spending the entire evening with them. She would have to tell Hunter to keep it quiet. Bud took care of the charges from Maxine’s living room, and promised that if he needed anything else, he’d see her at the hospital the next day. Hoyt left to get back to work, praising him Momma for calling him when she heard Jason’s voice. Maxine explained that by the time Sookie had called out to her, Hoyt was already on his way – but she was damn proud of Sookie for fighting back this time.
Instead of resting from the ordeal, Sookie moved to the kitchen to quickly cook Hunter’s meals for the next few days. Maxine was worried. She refused help; she didn’t cry over the situation, she was clearly in denial. Sookie told Maxine to keep the Jason stuff from Eric. The old woman agreed even knowing she was going to break that promise if Sookie didn’t tell Eric on her own. Sookie could be mad at her; Eric needed to know.
And now you see why you wanted to get the frying pan out – Jason is back with a vengeance! You won’t find out all the reasons for Jason’s charming personality for a while so you’ll just have to shake you head at him for now and wonder.
I’m all ready to start editing Chapter 9 and hope to have it up this weekend – so I won’t leave you hanging on the reaction to Jason’s fun and games for long